COVID-19 Global Roundup: Countries evacuating nationals from hot zones

Chen Zhuo
2020-03-06 16:24:28

A growing number of countries around the world have been evacuating or planning to evacuate citizens and diplomatic staff from areas hit by the novel coronavirus.

Following are the evacuation plans of some countries, and how they plan to manage the evacuees to avoid possible health risks.

- Some staff and their dependents were evacuated from the British embassy in Tehran as of March 1 but essential staff remain.

- Some 30 British passengers arrived back home on February 22 from the Diamond Princess cruise ship stranded off Japan. There were more than 70 British passengers on the cruise liner when cases of COVID-19 started to emerge.

- Britain's final evacuation flight from Wuhan, central China carrying more than 200 people, landed in Britain on February 9. A plane carrying 83 British and 27 European Union nationals from Wuhan landed at the end of January.

- A flight carrying 129 Canadians evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship landed on February 21. All repatriated passengers on the chartered flight had tested negative. There were 256 Canadians on board the ship, of which 47 have tested positive.

- Canada, after evacuating 215 people earlier, flew back 185 citizens from Wuhan on February 11. All evacuees were quarantined for two weeks.

- More than 150 Australians arrived home on February 20 to begin two weeks of quarantine after finally leaving the Diamond Princess cruise ship docked in Japan.

- A plane load of New Zealanders, Australians and Pacific Islanders evacuated from Wuhan arrived in Auckland, New Zealand on February 5.

- Kuwait to send a plane to Italy to evacuate citizens.

- Qatar brought back Qatari and Kuwaiti citizens from Iran.

- Indonesia has sent a navy ship to bring back 188 of its nationals working as crew aboard the World Dream cruise liner amid coronavirus concerns, a minister and a health ministry official said on February 24.

- Indonesia's government flew 243 Indonesians from Hubei on February 2 and placed them under quarantine at a military base on an island northwest of Borneo.

- In central Ukraine residents protested the arrival of a plane carrying evacuees from Hubei on February 20, despite official assurances there was no danger of infection. In addition to 45 Ukrainians, there were 27 Argentinians on the plane, as well as citizens of the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Kazakhstan, Costa Rica and other countries.

- The United States on February 17 flew back over 300 Americans who had been stuck on cruise ship Diamond Princess affected by the coronavirus. They faced two more weeks of quarantine after spending the previous 14 days on board the ship docked in Japan.

- The United States authorized the voluntary departure of its government employees and their family members from Hong Kong on February 11. On February 6, two planes with about 300 passengers, mostly U.S. citizens, took off from Wuhan for the United States.

- Nepal on February 16 evacuated 175 of its nationals from Wuhan.

- Six South Koreans and one Japanese spouse from the cruise ship Diamond Princess flew to South Korea on February 19 on a chartered flight.

- South Korea evacuated 147 people on a third chartered flight from Wuhan on February 12. The country flew 368 people on a chartered flight that arrived on January 31.

- A second evacuation flight brought back another 174 Singaporeans and their family members from Wuhan to the city state on February 9.

- Thirty Filipinos returned to the Philippines on February 9 from Wuhan, the Department of Foreign Affairs said.

- 34 Brazilians evacuated from Wuhan on a chartered flight landed in Brazil on February 9.

- Uzbekistan evacuated 251 people from China, the state airline said on February 6.

- Italy flew back 56 nationals from Wuhan to Rome on February 3.

- Saudi Arabia evacuated 10 students from Wuhan, Saudi state television reported on February 2.

- Bangladesh evacuated 312 people, mostly students, from Wuhan on a special flight on February 1, the foreign minister told media after they were brought back.

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